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It turns out that—despite what the legal community has long been led to believe—Yale Law School, not Harvard Law School, is primarily responsible for the manual known as The Blue Book, which establishes the proper form for legal citations. So reports The New York Times.

Two Yale Law School librarians researched the origins of manual, which—though indispensable to law students, law clerks, and litigators—is infamous for being clumsy and confusing. The librarians make a compelling case that Yale originated the idea of a uniform citation manual and came up with a lot of the specifics, with Harvard getting involved later in the manual’s development.

The librarians disavowed Yale’s responsibility for the manual’s seemingly unnecessary complexity, however, by stating “although the Bluebook version that subsequently developed under the leadership of Harvard Law Review currently consists of 582 fairly large pages, the two earliest Yale precursors of the Bluebook were, respectively, one page and fifteen pages long.”

Read the full article from The New York Times.

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